U.S. Antisatellite Program:

Responses to Questions on Program Funding

NSIAD-86-161BR: Published: Jun 19, 1986. Publicly Released: Jun 25, 1986.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reported on the Air Force's Antisatellite (ASAT) program, specifically: (1) the total number of ASAT weapons procurements; (2) the impact of cancellation of test shots against targets in the research and development phase; (3) the cost to terminate ASAT; (4) the feasibility of mothballing and restarting ASAT; (5) the status of the ASAT production funds; and (6) the minimum funding required for the program in fiscal year (FY) 1987.

GAO found that: (1) as of May 30, 1986, the Air Force had procured 15 research and development missiles, 4 miniature vehicles, and parts for 9 more vehicles; (2) testing against targets is vital to the program; (3) total government termination costs would vary depending upon the date of termination, the status of individual contracts, and the costs to settle claims; (4) there are no cost estimates for mothballing the contractor's production lines so as to ensure restarting capability at a later date; (5) about $62 million of the funds appropriated in FY 1985 for ASAT are unobligated, as well as $38 million appropriated in FY 1985 and 1986 for ASAT carrier aircraft equipment; and (6) the minimum level of funding required to keep the program going in FY 1987 depends upon the level of program desired.

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